Madam Cutie on Duty episode 16 recap

Side dish: The only thing as sweet as first love is young coconut. Creamy Coconut Pudding: Two Ways sounds like a good way to taste young love. Recipe courtesy of The Detoxinista.

Episode Recap

Undercover cop, Apple’s (Priscilla Wong) parents are aghast to learn that not only is their precious daughter married, but she is married to plumber, Tai Shu (Edwin Siu). Tai Shu invites Apple’s parents back to their apartment where he is told to butt out of family matters. Apple’s mother goes on a tirade about being deceived by Apple and her choice of husband. Instead of explaining that they are posing as a couple, Apple continues the deception about her relationship with Tai Shu.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.2

After listening to Apple’s mother deride plumbers, Tai Shu loses his temper. He gives her mother a piece of his mind then tops it off by smooching Apple. This prolonged public display of affection is fueled by anger, but still works its magic on Apple who becomes weak at the knees.

Apple’s mother and Tai Shu do all the talking, mom ends up storming out without her daughter. It turns out to be a good thing that the sham marriage was maintained, because they find an audience of their neighbours outside their door. They all plead with Apple’s mother to accept her daughter’s marriage.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.3

After Apple’s mother storms off with her father in tow, the neighbours compliment Tai Shu on his manliness, and he laps it up. Once they are alone, Apple gives him grief about angering her mother. She complains about him taking advantage of her with a kiss, and he argues that it was necessary to sell their cover. After kicking Tai Shu out of her room, Apple gets giddy about their kiss.

Apple has breakfast with her father the next morning, and he has already accepted her marriage. It was the kiss that convinced him of her love. Apple confesses that Tai Shu is her first love from high school, and her father proposes having Tai Shu over for dinner with Apple’s mother so that they can get to know each other.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.4

Beauty shop owner, Fung Nei (Kaki Leung) is contemplating calling the cops about being blackmailed by loan sharks, but she fears for the safety of her family. Housewife, Dan Dan (Mandy Wong) and single mother, Lin Heung (Rachel Kan) find out that Fung Nei still has the money in her possession, and want to know why. Fung Nei refuses to tell them anything, and they assume that she has betrayed them by cutting a deal with the loan sharks.

Apple is distracted from her undercover investigation by worry about reconciling with her mother. Tai Shu tries to cheer her up, and when that fails, he tells her to get over it. Apple makes a sour comment about Tai Shu being incapable of understanding her situation since his mother is gone, only to apologize immediately. Tai Shu shrugs it off, then sleep walks later that night while having a nightmare about being abandoned by his mother.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.5

After viewing Apple’s video evidence of his nocturnal distress, Tai Shu thinks back to the arguments between his parents. His mother left to undergo more plastic surgery as little Tai Shu tried to wake his father up in order to stop her. He tells Apple about never having seen his mother since. When Apple challenges the idea that his mother purposely stayed away from him, Tai Shu vows never to forgive her. He expresses disdain towards those who get plastic surgery, and Apple presents her own reasons for getting plastic surgery framed in a rhetorical manner. The argument gets increasingly heated as both Tai Shu and Apple take it to heart.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.6

Tai Shu’s father is being followed by the mysterious buyer of the condo he had been eyeing for years. She watches as he flirts with the waitress, and sits down to lunch with Tai Shu and Apple. Excited by the the fact that Tai Shu is married, the mystery woman follows Apple until she is attacked by naughty boys with water guns. Apple comes to her rescue then invites the mystery woman to her apartment to clean up. Mystery woman reveals a scar on her face, and discloses the fact that she and her husband have been separated for more than 20 years, but she gives Apple marriage advice, nonetheless.

Apple’s father convinces her mother to accept her daughter’s marriage to a plumber by reminding her how her parents initially objected to their relationship, too. Apple’s mother grudgingly admires Tai Shu for being the first to ever stand up to her.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.7

Meanwhile, Apple is taking her time selecting an outfit for Tai Shu to wear to dinner with her parents. He wonders why they are putting so much effort into a sham marriage. Tai Shu stiffens up and falls silent as Apple straightens his tie.

Before dinner, Apple shows Tai Shu her bedroom, and a note falls out of Apple’s box of mementos. When Tai Shu expresses curiosity about the note, Apple’s father identifies it as the love letter Apple wrote to Tai Shu in high school. Apple quickly silences her father as Tai Shu looks perplexed.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.8

Over dinner, Apple’s mother appears to have accepted their marriage, and she and her husband offer money for Tai Shu to start up his own business, an apartment so that they can move out of public housing, and to foot the bill for a wedding banquet. Tai Shu turns down all offers, and Apple’s mother is incensed by his refusal to compromise. Tai Shu leaves it to Apple to decide between him and her parents, and Apple chooses Tai Shu. Apple’s mother disowns her on the spot.

Fung Nei receives a call from the comatose loan shark’s sister, Ching in disguise. Ching gives Fung Nei a new drop off time for the money Fung Nei has collected. Dan Dan overhears Fung Nei’s conversation and tells her husband. She wants to follow Fung Nei out of concern for her, but her husband insists on going in her stead.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.9

The next day, while following Fung Nei in a car, Apple and Tai Shu notice someone suspicious also tailing Fung Nei, not knowing that it is Dan Dan’s husband. Fung Nei returns to the same park as the previous drop off, then leaves behind the chocolate box of money on a bench. It is snatched by a trash collector who, in turn, is grabbed by men in a van. Dan Dan’s husband is caught by Tai Shu and Apple as he is filming everything with his smartphone. They belatedly realize that they have caught the wrong person, and lost Ching to the real criminals.

Madam Cutie on Duty 16.10


At first, I was in a state of disbelief at Apple’s decision to deceive her parents about her marriage to Tai Shu. However, this was soon overtaken by delight at how entertaining the situation quickly became. The way Tai Shu took Apple’s mother’s insults against the plumbing profession personally was hilarious, and so was his kiss, which left Apple breathless and clutching on to Tai Shu for support.

In spite of her growing feelings for Tai Shu, I like that Apple still challenges him on his decisions. For instance, his reaction to being abandoned by his mother. She does not feed into his resentment and self-pity, but asks him to consider the possibility that his mother could not contact him, and reminds him of his own responsibility as a son in reaching out to his mother.

It is interesting to see Apple trying to get her parents to accept Tai Shu as a dry run for the possibility of the real thing. Tai Shu is also blurring the lines between fiction and reality in his heated defense of their marriage. While the loan shark story line is intriguing, I am glad that the writers are giving most of their attention to the burgeoning relationship between Apple and Tai Shu, which is really the basis of the entire show.

Madam Cutie on Duty (師奶MADAM)


1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 || series review

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